“It was never about a hot dog and a Coke®!”

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Civil Rights Marker in downtown Jacksonville-Hemming Park/Plaza. More »

With Stetson Kennedy, Wayne Greenhaw before we appeared together during a Civil Rights Session at the the 2011 Amelia Island Book Festival. Tragically, both Stetson and Wayne died later that year. More »

2011 Jacksonville Branch NAACP Annual Freedom Fund Dinner. More »

Members of the 1960 Jacksonville Youth Council NAACP TODAY---with Marjorie Meeks Brown, Dr. Arnett E. Girardeau, Iona Godfrey King, Rometa Graham Porter, Isaac Carnes, Alton Yates. More »

With NAACP National Executive Secretary Roy Wilkins in 1960 when he spoke in Jacksonville at one of the NAACP Mass Meetings. More »

With Ben Jealous, Speaker at the 2012 Jacksonville Branch NAACP Freedom Fund Dinner. More »

Receiving Bronze Medal as a Florida Book Awards Winner--with Wayne Wiegand. More »

With Dr. Michael Eric Dyson-Speaker at the 2009 Jacksonville Branch NAACP Freedom Fund Dinner. More »

Speaker-City of Jacksonville Dr. Martin Luther King Breakfast More »

With Dr. Charles Ogletree, the Harvard Law School Jesse Climenko Professor of Law, and Founding and Executive Director of the Charles Hamilton Houston Institute for Race and Justice...and the Speaker at the 2008 Jacksonville Branch NAACP Freedom Fund Dinner. Dr. Ogletree taught both Michelle Obama and President Obama at Harvard Law School. More »

Ruby Hurley and Ella Baker, two of 12 Civil Rights Icons immortalized in the 2009 USPS Stamp Issue-Civil Rights Pioneers. More »

Mrs. Ruby Hurley, Southeastern Regional Director NAACP and our 1960 NAACP Youth Council Surrogate Mother. Mrs. Hurley spent several months in Jacksonville (because of Ax Handle Saturday) directing her activities as NAACP director and working with us as we dealt with civil rights issues in Jacksonville. You can imagine my pride when she was selected and featured on a stamp as a Civil Rights Pioneer. More »

With Civil Rights Icon and Congressman John Lewis More »

Book Presentation at Stage Aurora in Jacksonville Florida. More »

With Morris Dees, Speaker at the 2011 Jacksonville Branch NAACP Freedom Fund Dinner. More »

With Dr. and Mrs. James Lowen and Mr. and Mrs. Ferdinand (Lois) JuLuke at Kingsley Plantation. Dr. Loewen spoke during the Jacksonville Branch NAACP 50th Anniversary Commemoration of the 1960 Sit-ins and Ax Handle Saturday. More »

With Civil Rights Stalwart and former Florida State Senator Dr. Arnett Girardeau, the first and only Black Senator to also serve as Senate President Pro Tempore, Ben Jealous, and wife, Ann. More »

At the Lufrano Gallery on the Campus of the University of North Florida for an Exhibit of Images in my Book---with Granddaughter, Kita; Son, Rodney II; Wife, Ann; Family Friend, Cheryl Coffey; and Granddaughter, Jasmine. More »

Book Images Exhibit - It was never about a hot dog and a Coke!- at the Lufrano Gallery at the University of North Florida. More »

50th Anniversary Commemoration of the 1960 Sit-ins and Ax Handle Saturday with members of the 1960 Jacksonville Youth Council NAACP. From left...Issac Carnes, Marjorie Meeks Brown, Mary Chisholm Underwood, Iona Godfrey King, and Ann Albertie Hurst (yep my wife). In the rear of the Pulpit area at Bethel Baptist Institutional Church...from left...Ms. Adora Nweze, President of the Florida State Conference of Branches NAACP; Rev. Dr. Randolph Bracy; Isaiah Rumlin, President of the Jacksonville Branch; and Bethel Senior Co-Pastor, Bishop Rudolph McKissick Sr. More »

Jacksonville Branch NAACP 2012 Freedom Fund Dinner More »

With Dr. Jelani Cobb at the 98th ASALH Annual Convention in Jacksonville October 2-6, 2013. More »

It was my honor to serve as Banquet Emcee at the 98th Convention of the Association for the Study of African American Life and History (ASALH) in Jacksonville, Florida October 5, 2013. Outstanding convention! More »

With the Incomparable Dr. Johnnetta Cole, Banquet Speaker at the 98th Convention of the Association for the Study of African American Life and History (ASALH) and American Beach Historian and Author Marsha D. Phelts. More »

St. Augustine Civil Rights Icon Dr. Robert Hayling. More »

With Dr. Jim Loewen and Priscilla Williamson. More »

98th ASALH Convention with Poet Great Sonia Sanchez and ASALH staffer Gaynelle Jackson. More »

98th ASALH Convention---Dr. Bernice Johnson Reagon and Dr. John Bracey. More »

With my mother and President Jimmy Carter. More »

 

Racism Is As American As Apple Pie.

RACISM a

The Saga of Donald Sterling is really not a conundrum and it certainly is not surprising.  It is not confusing nor is it difficult. It is Racism. I am always amused with so-called White liberals and Black handkerchief-head Niggers showing their shock at racism and core racist attitudes.  Why is anyone surprised at the racism among the 1% and the Slave/Slavery  Mentality which continually exists in this country? Racism in upscale “closed clubs” and exclusive “clubs” has been in existence for years. You do not get more exclusive than the fraternity of 1 per centers who own sport teams… the NFL…the NBA…MLB…and the like.

Racism has existed in this country's professional sport teams for years. Remember Jackie Robinson did not integrate baseball until 1947… Charles Henry "Chuck" Cooper, Nat "Sweetwater" Clifton, and Earl Lloyd integrated professional basketball in 1950…and the Washington Redskins(?) did not get its first Black team player until 1962 when they drafted their first Black  player, RB Ernie Davis who was subsequently traded to the Cleveland Browns for future Hall of Famer, Bobby Mitchell. They were the last NFL team to have had an all-white roster due to owner George Marshall's racist views who once said, "We'll start signing Negroes when the Harlem Globetrotters start signing whites." And then there is golf and the golf country clubs. Another Story …Another Day.

Let us not forget another American Institution of Racism…the political arena. Can you say the United States Senate and the various As Yet United States of America who export their racist senators to Washington DC? Another Story…Another Day. Of course, racism is never uncomfortable until it is exposed and until it gets expensive, and even then there is a high degree of toleration among other wealthy racists.

Note this from the Washington Post…

“The Donald Sterling who is dominating headlines and drawing widespread condemnation for allegedly saying a metric ton of racist things is the same Donald Sterling who has a long, long, long history of being accused of saying or doing offensive things. So why is this time — and why are these particular remarks — different? Why has the world suddenly discovered Donald Sterling?

It’s useful to step back for a moment and remember that this is not a sudden, heretofore unknown side of Sterling being unearthed. Rather, this is just the first time Sterling’s behavior has been the subject of quite so much scrutiny, shining for the first time the brightest possible light on his extensive and unbelievable history.

Consider that Bomani Jones wrote a story headlined “Sterling’s racism should be news” in 2006. Again: 2006. Eight years and 351 losses by the Clippers ago. Jones wrote this after Sterling was sued for housing discrimination. In the lawsuit, Sterling was accused of refusing to rent apartments to black people. (This followed a different lawsuit filed in 2003 alleging that Sterling tried to drive out black and Hispanic tenants, a suit that was settled with an undisclosed financial settlement that was believed to be quite sizable.) As Jones pointed out, the story didn’t really draw much attention at the time.

Sterling was ordered in 2009 to pay a $2.725 million settlement, the largest ever obtained by the Justice Department for such a housing discrimination case. (Sterling and his wife denied any wrongdoing.) That same year, former Clippers executive and NBA Hall of Fame member Elgin Baylor filed a lawsuit alleging decades of racist behavior by Sterling. Among other things, the suit claimed that Sterling said things like “I’m offering a lot of money for a poor black kid,” and said he wanted the team to be made up of “poor black boys from the South” with a white coach. (The racial claims were dropped before the trial; a jury rejected the lawsuit in 2011.)

The other stories are plentiful. Sterling allegedly using a racial slur when talking with a head coaching candidate during the early 1980s. Sterling testifying about paying a woman for sex. Here’s someone who worked at a building Sterling owned saying in sworn testimony that he heard Sterling say the following: “I don’t like Mexican men because they smoke, drink and just hang around the house.” (Peater Keating’s story for ESPN The Magazine in 2009 outlined a lengthy array of things Sterling was accused of saying; in the story, Keating noted that Sterling’s behavior was largely not being covered by the media.)”

Then there are those who pay lip service to racism, study racism and then massage it to death. Racism is an American institution set in motion with the Good Old Racist American Institution of Slavery.  You remember slavery?  When America kidnapped Africans from Africa to work for free.  The Slavery which America has never apologized. And of course every year we all get excited about the Emancipation Proclamation.  You remember the Emancipation Proclamation? When America decided to take off the physical chains and bonds of slavery and then said in passing, “Slaves are free”. Free?  With no money…no housing…no horse and buddy … and no 40 acres and a mule which, by the way, racist President Andrew Johnson rescinded when he became president. Reparations?  You remember reparations don’t you? Payment for the centuries of slavery and working for free that America laughs about.

So now we wait for the NBA Commissioner to decide how he will speak for other racists in the NBA Racism Club and how they intend to “punish” a racist member.  HUH? Mark Cuban say it is a slippery slope and NBA owners need to proceed carefully while making a decision purely based on the words of one of the members of their Racist Clubs.  Mark apparently has not read the extensive Sterling dossier. Well Mark, guess what?  Racism is a slippery slope and has been for some time.

What happens in the Sterling case short term and long term is anyone’s guess.  As Black people, we know the NBA will not do the right thing because it is the right thing to do.  There has to be an embarrassment of a financial toll. On racial issues, America has never done the right thing because it is the right thing to do. When you understand the civil rights movement, you understand the constant pressure of demonstrating against segregation and racism and making them financially and politically expensive which eventually led to some changes.  Of course with some of those changes Blacks slinked into a comfort mode feeling the fight against racism and for equality is all over and done. White liberals point to the election of President Obama as ample proof racism is over and done. Yet every day we see hard evidence racism is NOT over and done. I have always said going back to the streets is still very much on the “things to return to” horizon. By the way, stop spending our money with those entities that support and protect racism is also on the “things to return to”.  It will take that because some of us are much too comfortable when it comes to racism.

The Struggle still continues.RLHSR.

Wealthy Racist NBA Owner Donald Sterling

Sterling

Donald Sterling and Lady friend V. Stiviano.

Donald Sterling is the owner of the Los Angeles Clippers. Sterling acquired the Clippers in 1981 for $12.5 million, and as of 2014, the team is valued at $575 million by Forbes magazine.  Donald Sterling is a racist…a pure and simple wealthy racist at that. He has caused quite a firestorm in the world of Profession Basketball. This is the recent story as caught on a recorded telephone call.

Sterling tells V. Stiviano, his Black girlfriend—although she is Black and Mexican, the “One Drop of Black Blood” Rule applies here—he does not want her bringing Blacks to Los Angeles Clippers basketball games. A few comments from a 9 minute or so telephone conversation …

“You can sleep with [black people]. You can bring them in; you can do whatever you want.  The little I ask you is not to promote it on that … and not to bring them to my games.”

“I’m just saying, in your lousy f—ing Instagrams, you don’t have to have yourself with, walking with black people.” “…Don’t put him [Magic] on an Instagram for the world to have to see so they have to call me.  And don’t bring him to my games.”

Don’t bring them to watch the team he owns, mainly made up of 12 (of 14) Black players, and a Black coach? Black Clipper fans, the owner would prefer it if you not attend in person, and in particular, not with his girlfriend. Seemingly, he was upset with her taking  a picture with NBA legend Magic Johnson at a Clippers basketball game no less. As repulsive and revealing as this story is, it is not complete because there is more to Sterling’s earlier racist history.

It is the history of a man who paid a record $2.75 million to settle a federal housing discrimination lawsuit that included accusations that Sterling and his wife made statements "indicating that African-Americans and Hispanics were not desirable tenants and that they preferred Korean tenants." After he settled the housing discrimination lawsuit, he later bragged to the Los Angeles Times that "I didn't pay a penny — the insurance company did … We absolutely denied doing anything wrong, and rather than it going on and on, the insurance company said it would settle."

It is the history of a man who was unsuccessfully sued for wrongful termination by former general manager Elgin Baylor, who claimed, among other things, that Sterling once said, "I would like to have a white Southern coach coaching poor black players," and that Sterling would bring women into the locker room to gaze at his players' "beautiful black bodies."

These are but two of the many incidents associated with Racist Donald Sterling. And the league did nothing. No fines, no suspensions, not even a slap on the wrist came Sterling's way. The NBA harbored a racist owner for years and hoped that no one would notice or care, and now it has blown up in the league's face.

President Obama said the statements were "incredibly offensive" and "racist".  “I don't think I have to interpret those statements for you. They kind of speak for themselves," said Obama. "When ignorant folks want to advertise their ignorance, you don't really have to do anything, you

Now it is up to new commissioner Adam Silver to do what should have been done so long ago — send the clear message to Wealthy Racist Donald Sterling that his brand of racism is no longer tolerated. Of course, it does not say much for the other NBA owners who had to have an inkling about Sterling’s proclivities and peccadilloes. It was a cynical game the NBA was playing, hoping that Sterling's racist ugliness would remain on the periphery, nothing more than fodder for the occasional news story that would quickly fade away. It was like a company that chooses not to recall a dangerous product, thinking it's more cost-effective to deal with the periodic accidents than to take the product off the assembly line altogether. The NBA gambled and finally lost. Sterling has caused a big, messy pileup, and the debris won't easily be cleaned up. A record-setting fine should be a given, a suspension a must. And the NBA must find a way to force Racist Donald Sterling to sell the franchise. Period.

The Struggle Continues. RLHSR.

Repeat after me: President. Obama. Is. Black.

PRESIDENT OBAMA A

Jacob Philadelphia touches President Obama's hair.

(Another article written by one of my favorite writers, Denise Oliver Velez. I am re-posting her entire column with nothing other than my usual ending comment.  Nothing else is necessary.)

"I happened to run across this item in the Washington Post this week, Is Barack Obama ‘black’? A majority of Americans say no, penned by Chris Cillizza (Jon Perr has described him as a "conventional wisdom regurgitator"). Cillizza links to data in his article from PEW Research (which gets it wrong) and natters on and on about a topic that should be case closed. We discussed it in Black Kos, and we all had the same reaction.

They say a picture is worth a thousand words, and young, black Jacob Philadelphia touching Barack Obama's close-cropped black hair said it for me. As Jonathan Capeheart wrote in Photo speaks volumes about Obama and race:

A black man allowing his head to be touched by a stranger. But not just any stranger. A child seeking a familiar link between himself and the black man, who also happens to be the leader of the free world.

I'm already worn out from the relentless racial obduracy of Jonathan Chait, last seen defending himself again on the Melissa Harris-Perry show on MSNBC after his back-and-forth with Ta-Nehisi Coates—who scored point, game match against Chait.  

The rabid racist right-wing in this country already knows that "their" White House has been violated by blackness. The birthers and their ilk still spew venom (see Rand Paul's new pollster). Klan-fueled, white supremacist haters murdered people at a Jewish Center, slayed Sikhs and plot to kill the president. This is familiar news.

That's why the timing of Cillizza's piece is curious.

Could it have anything to do with the recent activities of President Obama and upcoming elections?

Follow me below the fold for more.

Frankly, it's no coincidence that just after he speaks at the LBJ Civil Rights Summit, followed by his address to the National Action Network we get his not-blackness dragged up again. Markos just wrote African Americans hold key to Senate, and he's right. The black community is and has been for a long time a key part of the base of the Democratic Party. I'll be damned if I'm gonna sit here and go through the "we don't really have a black man in the White House" meme, again, and stay silent.

This crap made news in 2010: Asked to Declare His Race, Obama Checks ‘Black’, with the expected response from the right. The New York Times piece opened with,"It is official: Barack Obama is the nation’s first black president."

Well, duh.

We already know that the right-wing racists (which includes a very large chunk of those who call themselves Republicans these days) have been unloading truck-loads of racist crap against his "blackness." Michelle Obama—you know, that black woman who is now First Lady of the United States—and daughters Sasha and Malia have come in for their share of racial smears and slime as well.

Before anyone comments "But..but…but…his momma was white…" and starts talking about biracial—and yes, I know race is a social construct (as an anthropologist I write about it often, and teach it)—let me say this:  

The howls of outrage when Barack Obama spoke about Trayvon Martin could be his son had nothing to do with Obama's mother being white. He was very clear about his blackness:

"You know, when Trayvon Martin was first shot, I said that this could have been my son. Another way of saying that is Trayvon Martin could have been me, 35 years ago," he said somberly.

The president knows that if he were just a guy walking down the street, in a hoodie and sneaks, he certainly wouldn't get stopped and frisked, or murdered for bein' "half-white," as some folks put it. In his remarks about Trayvon, he was explicit:

"There are very few African-American men in this country who haven't had the experience of being followed when they were shopping in a department store. That includes me," he said.

He said he sometimes heard the clicks of car doors locking when he walked across the street in his younger days.

"There are very few African-Americans who haven't had the experience of getting on an elevator and a woman clutching her purse nervously and holding her breath until she had a chance to get off. That happens often," he said.

Having a white parent does not stop you from being black. Ask me about my dad. Ask Ben Jealous, who just stepped down from his post as head of the NAACP.  Ask Melissa Harris-Perry.

Melissa Harris-Perry, a professor of politics and African-American studies at Princeton University, was raised in a racially charged South. Her mother was white and her father was black.

"I was born fewer than 10 years after the 1965 Voting Rights Act," she said. "My mother was from the West and when she first came, she said, 'Why are there two pools?' My father said, 'Jim Crow, Diana, Jim Crow.'"

The term biracial was unheard of then. Today, Americans come in all colors and ethnicities. But the word "biracial" is "meaningless because race and culture and language and identity are all a social construct," said Harris-Perry.

The "most contested" biracial construct is being black and white," she said. "This sounds nuts, but it's impossible to achieve whiteness."

"When people passed at the turn of century, it was because there were real and violent and political consequences to being a person of color," she said. "They passed with great danger and fear and cost. You risked everything—marriage, job and economic security. You can't just tick off white as an identity that has been protected and policed and legislated for hundreds of years. It carries with it a package of privileges and opportunities."

As Jenée Desmond-Harris put it over at The Root, in response to the Pew poll mentioned above:

In fact, for as long as black people have been around, "mixed race" people have called themselves—and have been called—black. Whether you love or hate the legacy of racism and the "one-drop rule" that likely perpetuated this way of thinking, and whether you wish we could all stop talking about color altogether, this is the world we live in. And it's not new at all.

Cue the racial auditors: How can black parent + white parent = mixed-race child = black child? The numbers don't check out.

Because race is a concept created by humans that is not mathematical and not scientific. As a result, the slippery, nonsensical and totally-up-to-the-individual-interpretation nature of it will continue to drive people crazy. But we'll continue to talk about it—in our personal lives, in politics and, apparently, in Pew polls—because the messy categories we use continue to have social significance.

So, although some people with President Obama's same background might adamantly choose "biracial" or "mixed race" or "just human," for many others (this writer included), being mixed race is simply the specific way in which they're black. That's not inside information, and examples from history and popular culture are abundant. If you want to know more, Google "biracial African Americans" or "mixed-race African Americans" and have at it.

I don't take issue with anyone who decides to identify themselves as biracial or mixed race. But frankly, if they look at all phenotypically black—even if light-skinned—they are going to find out that racists ain't gonna embrace their white half.

Flip it this way: What would your response be if Barack Obama had decided to check the box on the census for white? What if I tell you I'm Norwegian? (I have some in my family tree.) Y'all would holla "get the therapist! Chile is in de-nial."

No way can Obama even "pass for white." He knows he is black, he self-identifies as black, and if 500 years from now we have eliminated the concept of race with its accompanying systemic racism, he will still be listed in the history books as our first black president.  

I realize that there are critics of President Obama, of all colors and from both ends of the political spectrum, who have carped about the fact that he doesn't talk about race enough and he hasn't been paying attention to black folks. Of course, wingnuts think that that is all he does.  

As I said earlier, I think that this recent flurry of articles attempting to remove him from blackness is a direct result of the two speeches mentioned above—especially the one in which he was talking to a crowd of majority black folks.

In Barack Obama's Challenge to American Morality, Ta-Nehisi Coates wrote about this speech:

His address on voter-suppression efforts is one of the most significant and morally grounded speeches of his presidency….

I think we will eventually regard this current effort to suppress the vote through voter-ID laws, ending early voting, restricting voting hours, etc., in the same way we regard literacy tests and poll taxes. (It's worth recalling this piece for the magazine by Mariah Blake which helps historicize voter suppression.)

I believe in judging Barack Obama's rhetoric and policies not as though he were the president of black America, but of the United States of America. On that count his speech soared. There aren't many topics more important than the security of our democracy. The president did not attack that topic gingerly, but forcefully, directly and without hedge.

It's an important speech.

As an aside, I'll add that I still can't get over seeing a black dude, who is the president, standing in front of Garvey's red, black, and green. Strange days, I tell you. Strange days, indeed. No one knows where this is going.

Yeah. A black dude.

The same black man who understands where we've been as a people, where we are today and where we need to go.

Just read this transcript of President Obama's remarks at the LBJ Presidential Library Civil Rights Summit:

Now, if some of this sounds familiar, it’s because today we remain locked in this same great debate about equality and opportunity, and the role of government in ensuring each.  As was true 50 years ago, there are those who dismiss the Great Society as a failed experiment and an encroachment on liberty; who argue that government has become the true source of all that ails us, and that poverty is due to the moral failings of those who suffer from it.  There are also those who argue, John, that nothing has changed; that racism is so embedded in our DNA that there is no use trying politics — the game is rigged.

But such theories ignore history. Yes, it’s true that, despite laws like the Civil Rights Act, and the Voting Rights Act and Medicare, our society is still racked with division and poverty. Yes, race still colors our political debates, and there have been government programs that have fallen short. In a time when cynicism is too often passed off as wisdom, it’s perhaps easy to conclude that there are limits to change; that we are trapped by our own history; and politics is a fool’s errand, and we’d be better off if we roll back big chunks of LBJ’s legacy, or at least if we don’t put too much of our hope, invest too much of our hope in our government.

I reject such thinking. (Applause.) Not just because Medicare and Medicaid have lifted millions from suffering; not just because the poverty rate in this nation would be far worse without food stamps and Head Start and all the Great Society programs that survive to this day. I reject such cynicism because I have lived out the promise of LBJ’s efforts. Because Michelle has lived out the legacy of those efforts. Because my daughters have lived out the legacy of those efforts. Because I and millions of my generation were in a position to take the baton that he handed to us.  (Applause.)

Because of the Civil Rights movement, because of the laws President Johnson signed, new doors of opportunity and education swung open for everybody — not all at once, but they swung open. Not just blacks and whites, but also women and Latinos; and Asians and Native Americans; and gay Americans and Americans with a disability. They swung open for you, and they swung open for me. And that’s why I’m standing here today — because of those efforts, because of that legacy. (Applause.)

This man does not forget that he is black. Yes, he knows he is the President of the United States, and wasn't elected to be a president for black folks only. Yes, it ain't easy trying to talk about race in this country. Just look at what happened to Hank Aaron, for having the bravery to step up to the race plate, again.

Read. My. Black. Lips.

Barack Hussein Obama is a black man. Elected POTUS twice.  

Deal with it." by Denise Oliver Velez for Daily Kos on Sun Apr 20, 2014.

The Struggle Continues. RLHSR.


Racist America Stoops Low…Again!

http://talkingpointsmemo.com/livewire/hank-aaron-atlanta-braves-racist-hate-mail

Hank Aaron

Hey Racists…Just like cream, you prove everyday slime can rise to the surface.  You called Baseball Great Hank Aaron every racial epithet imaginable when he was about to break Babe Ruth’s record.  One racist wrote, “How dare you Nigger break the record of one of the greatest white men who ever lived?” So on the 40th anniversary of his breaking “The Babe’s” record Aaron talked about the racism then…the racism now…and the racism heaped on President Obama today for which he has an obvious feel.

April 9, 2014
Baseball Hall of Famer Hank Aaron compared Republicans that oppose President Barack Obama to the Ku Klux Klan. Speaking to USA Today Tuesday on the 40th anniversary of his then record-breaking 715th home run, the 80-year-old Aaron said that Republicans are hindering Obama’s job performance. “Sure, this country has a black president, but when you look at a black president, President Obama is left with his foot stuck in the mud from all of the Republicans with the way he’s treated,” Aaron told USA Today Sports.

Aaron goes on to describe the racist letters he has kept for decades as he was chasing Babe Ruth’s home run record. “To remind myself that we are not that far removed from when I was chasing the record,” Aaron explained to USA Today Sports. “If you think that, you are fooling yourself. A lot of things have happened in this country, but we have so far to go. There’s not a whole lot that has changed.” Aaron continued: “The bigger difference is that back then they had hoods. Now they have neckties and starched shirts.”

According to USA Today, the Braves organization has received hundreds of letters, emails and phone calls since Aaron made his comments a week ago. "Hank Aaron is a scumbag piece of (expletive) (racial slur)'' read an email from a man named Edward, according to USA Today. Edward evidently used the racist epithet five times. "My old man instilled in my mind from a young age, the only good (racial slur) is a dead (racial slur)," he wrote in closing.

One man called Aaron a "racist scumbag," while another vowed to never attend another Braves game until Aaron is fired from the team's front office. A man named David said he plans to burn Aaron's autobiography.

Way to go Racist America! Anything less would be downright UnAmerican.

The Struggle Continues.  RLHSR.

If It Walks Like A Racist and Talks Like A Racist…It Is A Racist.

http://http://www.thenation.com/blog/179304/real-racists-have-always-worn-suits

racists 2 racists

From time to time, I re-post someone's article without any additional commentary, and I also of course, attribute proper credit. This is one of those articles by Mychal Denzel Smith.

"This week we’ve commemorated the fiftieth anniversary of the passing of the Civil Rights Act of 1964, the monumental piece of legislation aimed at outlawing discrimination based on race. A three-day-long “civil rights summit” was organized at the LBJ Presidential Library in Austin, Texas, where many past and present activists and politicians spoke on the legacy of the Civil Rights Act.

With the commemoration has come further discussion about the contemporary face of American racism (Chris Hayes hosted a great segment on the topic last night with Salon’s Brittney Cooper and New York’s Jonathan Chait). Over at BET, Keith Boykin wrote:

Despite the progress of the past half century, the struggle continues. “The bigger difference is that back then they had hoods. Now they have neckties and starched shirts.” So said baseball hall of famer Hank Aaron in an interview with USA Today this week, in which he seemed to compare the racist klansmen of the 1960s with the supposedly post-racial cynics of our current generation.

You see, today’s racists don’t wear white hoods and scream the N-word. They wear dark suits and scream about government handouts. They don’t set up racist poll taxes to deter Blacks from voting. They set up voter ID laws to do the same thing. And they certainly don’t defend lynch mobs, which legitimize vigilante justice. Instead, they defend Stand Your Ground laws, which achieve the same purpose.

But I have trouble with this framing. It’s neat and easily digestible for anyone with only a cursory understanding of American history and racism, and therefore popular as a means of telling that history. It has broad appeal, but it’s not accurate. It flattens history and does the work of placing the onus for past bad deeds on a select few. It reinforces the image of “the real racist” as one who expressed their hatred in demonstrably violent ways. It suggests that racists have simply become more sophisticated, changing the tactics of their hatred from burning crosses to writing legislation, from white hoods to business suits, as that Hank Aaron quote contends.

Here’s the problem with that narrative: the architects and gatekeepers of American racism have always worn neckties. They have always been a part of the American political system.

I understand the impulse in wanting to find some way to convey that what we’re dealing with currently is a system of racism that is less overt than it once was. Saying things like “we’ve gone from white hoods to business suits” is one way to seem to speak to contemporary racism’s less vocal, yet still insidious nature. But it does a disservice to the public understanding of racism, and in the process undercuts the mission of drawing attention to contemporary racism’s severity.It wasn’t the KKK that wrote the slave codes. It wasn’t the armed vigilantes who conceived of convict leasing, postemancipation. It wasn’t hooded men who purposefully left black people out of New Deal legislation. Redlining wasn’t conceived at a Klan meeting in rural Georgia. It wasn’t “the real racists” who bulldozed black communities in order to build America’s highway system. The Grand Wizard didn’t run COINTELPRO in order to dismantle the Black Panthers. The men who raped black women hired to clean their homes and care for their children didn’t hide their faces.

The ones in the hoods did commit violent acts of racist terrorism that shouldn’t be overlooked, but they weren’t alone. Everyday citizens participated in and attended lynchings as if they were state fairs, bringing their children and leaving with souvenirs. These spectacles, if not outright endorsed, were silently sanctioned by elected officials and respected members of the community.

It’s easy to focus on the most vicious and dramatic forms of racist violence faced by past generations as the site of “real” racism. If we do, we can also point out the perpetrators of that violence and rightly condemn them for their actions. But we can’t lose sight of the fact that those individuals alone didn’t write America’s racial codes. It’s much harder to talk about how that violence was only reinforcing the system of political, economic and cultural racism that made America possible. That history indicts far more people, both past and present."

The Struggle Continues. RLHSR.

A Racist Defends a Racist.

http://www.politicususa.com/2014/04/10/joe-scarborough-defends-louie-gohmert-tells-eric-holder-stop-playing-race-card.html

Eric Holder

A Racist defends a Racist because the Black Attorney General dares call out those who would disrespect the Office of the Attorney General and The President of the United States of America.

From the article with some of my modifications for emphasis…Get this picture– A panel of  White Middle-aged Morning Joe-ites on the Morning Joe Show (which I do not watch) discussing the issue of whether or not a Black man has experienced bigotry and prejudice while doing his job. Worse, Joe Scarborough brushes this issue aside with snide remarks (as usual) and arrogantly points out that he, and his other white colleagues on the panel, have been in Washington a long time and they know best. In other words, Massa knows what is best for you Blacks."

My comments…Why are Whites so eager to tell Blacks WE are always playing the race card? WE did not invent racism…Jim Crow Laws…the Black Codes…or Slavery. I never hear anyone saying to persons who are Jewish, “There y’all go again. Always talking about the Holocaust”. Or telling Jews, “Let the Holocaust stay in the past and let’s move on.” First, Jews do not intend to let anyone forget how they were so vilely treated and killed during World War II while the world just watched. We should see and hear constant reminders about the Holocaust …and though it ended… the Institution of American Racism continues. Blacks cannot sponsor TV series…or underwrite movies and documentaries which could remind America about its Home-Grown Racism. And even when we write about racism, many Whites dismiss the notion they are responsible for racism and slavery.

Then you have your general assortment of Blacks who think they have arrived and are quick to opine that some Blacks talk TOO much about racism. In other words, if we just stop talking about racism, it would somehow disappear. And anyway, too much talk about racism makes their White friends nervous. Of course, they do not want anything to interfere with their neat Black/White social and civic circles. Speaking of circles, whatever to those cute little Local Study Circles designed to “do away” with racism?

The Struggle will always continue because before we can get to fighting the enemy and the evils of racism, we have to fight Wannabee Blacks who do not have a clue about anything including the color of their skin…and Liberal Whites (not Progressives) who know what is best for “You People”.

The Struggle Continues. RLHSR.

Racists Are Limited and Have A Limited Vocabulary.

Republican Senate Candidate Says Obama’s Blackness Is Shielding Him From Impeachment by Jason Easley for PoliticusUSA

PRESIDENT OBAMA

"In an interview with the Daily Times Herald, Iowa Republican senate candidate Sam Clovis claimed that President Obama’s race is saving him from impeachment.

Clovis said, “I don’t think so, and I’ll tell you why. It’s not that what he has done would not rise to the level where it might be impeachable. I don’t think it’s a practical, pragmatic issue. And simply because I don’t think the nation is ready for it. You know, within this generation, we went through the impeachment of a president, and it didn’t end well, and now we have a situation where race is thrown into the cards as well. Whether we like it or not, race is an issue.”

Clovis was asked if Obama was white would he be impeached. He answered, “I wouldn’t say that I think people would.”

He was asked if he thought the only reason why Congress isn’t going after impeachment is the color of the president’s skin. Clovis answered,”I would say there are people in the House of Representatives right now that would very much like to take the opportunity to start the process. And I think the reason that they’re not is because they’re concerned about the media.”

This is an example of Republicans trying to have it both ways. On one hand, they are claiming that the president has committed impeachable offenses, but, on the other hand, they can’t impeach the president because he is black.

Republicans always claim that President Obama has committed a high crime, but they can’t name anything that Obama has done that is grounds for impeachment. The Republican Party is so deep into their blind hatred of the president that they aren’t making any sense.

It isn’t the media reaction that Republicans need to worry about if they were to try to impeach Obama. The majority of the country would be outraged, and the impeachment crazed Republicans would certainly be thrown out of office.

Cowardly racists like Sam Clovis don’t belong in the U.S. Senate, and his dog whistle impeachment cries will get him the deserved scorn of a nation."

Republican Senate Candidate Says Obama’s Blackness Is Shielding Him From Impeachment was written by Jason Easley for PoliticusUSA.

My Comments…Jason Easley is on point!

White Racists are such Cowards. Unless they have on a robe with a mask and riding a horse or in a car at night, they are either apologizing for things THEY say… or THEY are trying to come up with convenient excuses to keep from saying things they want to say and things they want to do. If you are going to be a racist, BE a racist.

Racists will remain racists until and unless we …Black Folks and White Folks…call them out. Have you called out a racist recently?

The Struggle Continues. RLHSR.

AMERICA HAS ALREADY TURNED ITS BACK ON CIVIL RIGHTS.

 

 

Will America once more turn its back on civil rights?

 

"As the United States marks the anniversary of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.’s assassination, the civil rights revolution he helped spur is in peril. The progress African Americans forged has stalled. Will the United States once more turn its back on civil rights?

It has happened before. The first Reconstruction began with the Civil War and ended with the passage of the civil rights amendments ending slavery and guaranteeing equal protection under the law. Newly freed slaves pushed to exercise their rights. They won local elections and served on juries. They helped create what were the first public school systems in the South.

The reaction was brutal. The Ku Klux Klan terrorized African Americans across the South. Democrats became the party of the Confederacy. Barely 15 years later, Reconstruction was abandoned. In the Compromise of 1877, Republicans got Democratic support for ratifying the election of Rutherford B. Hayes to the presidency in exchange for removing federal troops from the South, betraying the newly freed African Americans. As W.E.B. Du Bois wrote, “The slave went free, stood a brief moment in the sun; and then moved back again towards slavery.”

It took a new civil rights and legal movement to end the decades of enforced segregation that followed. In Brown v. Board of Education, the Supreme Court threw out the lie of “separate but equal” and ordered desegregation in public education. In Baker v. Carr, it outlawed discriminatory apportionment schemes. The moral force of King on the outside and President Lyndon Johnson on the inside succeeded in passing the 1964 Civil Rights Act, banning discrimination in public accommodations and guaranteeing equal employment opportunity, as well as and the 1965 Voting Rights Act, enforcing the right to vote. Johnson’s War on Poverty had a dramatic effect on reducing poverty, particularly among African Americans. Whites as well as blacks in the South benefited from King’s revolution.

With the election of Barack Obama, many hailed a new post-racial America. But even with Obama in the White House, stubborn facts raise questions about that optimism. African Americans suffered the most in the Great Recession. The wealth gap between African Americans and whites doubled, with median net worth of African Americans down to a shocking $4,955 (compared to $110,729 for whites). Blacks continue to endure more than twice the rate of unemployment as whites and suffer more long-term unemployment and lower wages, with more than one out of three African American children raised in poverty .

With public education largely funded locally and states and the federal government cutting back, the “savage inequality” of school funding ensures that those schools are not merely separate but also unequal. In our justice system, African Americans are more likely to be stopped by law enforcement, more likely to be arrested if stopped and more likely to be charged and sentenced if arrested. And punitive and discriminatory sentencing, particularly for drug offenses, has resulted in 2.2 million African Americans stripped of the right to vote by felony disenfranchisement laws.

These hard realities are reinforced by political and judicial reaction. Once more, demagogues feed racial paranoia: “In Obama’s America,” preaches Rush Limbaugh, “the white kids now get beat up with the black kids cheering.” Politicians such as Rep. Paul Ryan blame poverty on the poor, claiming that our threadbare safety net – now stripped of aid to dependent children – is turning into a “hammock.”

Efforts to suppress the vote of minorities and the poor are proliferating, with state and after state cutting back voting days, repealing same-day registration and creating strict voter identification requirements to discriminatory effect.

Worse, the five conservatives on the Supreme Court have put civil rights on the retreat. Shelby County v. Holder gutted key parts of the Voting Rights Act. Meredith v. Jefferson Country Board of Education declared affirmative desegregation plans in schools to be unconstitutional. Affirmative action faces continuous assault in the courts.

This retreat is poisonous in our increasingly diverse society. We cannot afford to go back to the confederate way of doing business or politics. We can’t afford to write off another generation of young people of color who will be closer to a majority of our nation when they are adults.

Today, unlike after the Civil War, it will be harder to stop the march of civil rights. Demography will increasingly punish rather than reward the party of white sanctuary. Attorney General Eric H. Holder Jr. has called on states to repeal discriminatory felony disenfranchisement laws. Even a few Republicans have joined with Democrats to try to revive the Voting Rights Act.

But the lesson of Reconstruction is clear: Progress toward greater justice is not inevitable. Equal justice under the law will not be inherited; each generation must fight to extend it or risk watching it erode. We aren’t headed back to the days of Jim Crow, but we have a long way to go before we fulfill the Founders’ promise of equal justice under the law."

The Struggle Continues. RLHSR.

You Cannot Substitute for Greatness.

http://talkingpointsmemo.com/cafe/the-judicial-bench-needs-professional-diversity-too

Many of us know the sheer magnitude of substance we lost when Justice Thurgood Marshall died. His appointment to the United States Supreme Court was monumental in so many ways. He was not only a great legal mind, but his wealth of experiences brought diversity and knowledge to a federal court system when many of his White colleagues did not have a clue.

This "After Marshall" US Supreme Court and its lack of diversity and professional legal experience is woeful. Some of its integrity challenged justices are responsible for some of the most egregious decisions and as such have affected many decisions of lower federal courts. When you finally get around to working on and solving the professional/legal experience diversity issue, how about impeaching Uncle Clarence Thomas too? That would surely help.

Maybe President Obama can right many of the wrongs of this Supreme Court and the federal court system with some key federal judiciary appointments.  That is, if he is not blocked and thwarted by some of the same Republicants responsible for this "mess" in the first place.

The Struggle Continues.  RLHSR.

Racism Bubbles To The Surface From Racists Submerged in Racist Slime.

http://http://www.politicususa.com/2014/03/25/bush-sec-defense-donald-rumsfeld-compares-president-obama-trained-ape.html

From the article Racism At Center Of GOP Movement As More Whites Became Republican During Obama Years By: Justin Baragona Tuesday, March, 25th, 2014 www.politicususa.com …“Gallup released the results of a study on Monday showing the racial breakdown of political party affiliation since 1995. What the study revealed, and what most people have already figured out, is that with the election of President Obama in 2008, more white Americans have shifted party allegiance to the Republican Party, or have at least indicated they lean Republican. Meanwhile, Democrats continue to enjoy a huge advantage among non-whites, with almost no change in Democratic preference from the Clinton and Bush presidencies.

The problem for Republicans, of course, is that the country is becoming less and less white. While appealing to the raw emotional reaction that many white voters had when they saw a black man elected President, the Republican Party was able to utilize that to gain Congressional victories in 2010. However, they still saw a huge defeat in the Presidential election in 2012 and lost House and Senate seats as well. The short term gains they enjoyed in 2010 couldn’t be sustained.”

Disrespect of President Obama by racist White Republicant males has reached epidemic proportions, and it affects others throughout this country. Whites can deny racism exists in this country until the cows come home but all you have to do is open your eyes. Bottom line…There are none so blind as those who will not see. And I am no longer accepting apologies for racist comments/statements and the like. You meant it when you said…just strap on your brass ones and be a man about it.

The Struggle Continues. RLHSR.